Reed Richardson

Reed Richardson

Reed Richardson is a media critic whose work has appeared in The Nation, Harvard University’s Nieman Reports and the textbook Media Ethics (Current Controversies). Follow him on Twitter: @reedfrich

Articles by this author

Make no mistake, this is an absurd false equivalence. Did she inaccurately enumerate Pentagon waste in a political argument? Certainly. Did she willfully, intentionally and repeatedly attempt to mislead the public, smear minorities, or traffic in racist propaganda or conspiracy theories, as in the above examples of Trump’s rhetoric? The question answers itself. (Photo: Screengrab) Views
Friday, December 07, 2018
Trump, Ocasio-Cortez, and Factcheck False Equivalence
In an era when the president of the United States is an inveterate, habitual, daily liar, about all things great and small, and especially about himself, factchecking sites can provide an invaluable—if increasingly overwhelmed—public service. Though the siloing off of this core function of...
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If the last month is any indication, establishment news organizations like the Post and the Times still haven’t learned the key lessons about their flawed 2016 election coverage. (Photo: Screenshot) Views
Friday, November 16, 2018
Who, Us? Corporate Media Ignore Their Role in Trump’s Refugee ‘Invasion’ Panic
If the establishment media’s coverage in the home stretch of the 2018 midterm elections is any kind of prologue to 2020, be prepared for an avalanche of right-wing xenophobic propaganda during our next presidential election. That’s because, once again, the political press dutifully chased Trump’s...
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The fact that the US has maintained a broad—and now growing—combat footprint in Syria continues to be so overlooked by the establishment press that even prominent New York Times columnists have forgotten it. (Photo: Screenshot) Views
Monday, September 17, 2018
As Trump Commits to Endless War, Corporate Media Obsess Over Anonymous Op-Ed
The anonymous New York Times op-ed ( 9/5/18 ), purportedly written by a senior Trump administration official, coupled with the release of Bob Woodward’s new book, Fear —itself full of White House back-stabbing and anonymous quotes—unleashed a veritable tsunami of breathless press speculation last...
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Saturday, March 24, 2018
Journalism of, by and for the Elite
American journalism has long maintained a sort of egalitarian myth about itself. While our country’s free press requires no formal training or licensing, an honest history of the profession shows very distinct hierarchies, from the vaunted Runyonesque blue-collar beat reporter to legendary insiders...
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Saturday, March 10, 2018
West Virginia Strike Highlights Corporate Media’s Atrophied Labor Coverage
On any given day, the American public can watch one of several Wall Street–focused cable news channels, read numerous high finance–oriented newspapers (as well as ubiquitous business sections in others), or click on a seemingly endless supply of online sites and news apps tracking the profits and...
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Sunday, February 11, 2018
Corporate Media Ignoring Puerto Rico's 'Shock Doctrine' Makeover
Nearly five months after Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, more than a hundred thousand U.S. citizens there still lack clean drinking water , and almost one-third of the island has no reliable electric power. As initial life-sustaining recovery efforts still grind toward completion, Puerto Rico’s...
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Friday, December 15, 2017
Net Neutrality Repeal Is Only Part of Trump’s Surrender to Corporate Media
The FCC is under attack—and so too is the First Amendment. As the primary regulator of how media and information gets to our nation’s citizens, the Federal Communications Commission has a critical role to play in protecting the open Internet, free speech, and free press in our democracy. Though the...
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Thursday, September 28, 2017
Ken Burns’ Vietnam War: An Object Lesson in the Failures of the Objective Lens
If journalism resigns itself to being a “first draft of history,” Ken Burns’ popular PBS documentaries, written by Lynn Novick, have increasingly aspired to—and achieved—a coveted status as popular historical canon. This has, in part, been accomplished by Burns’ choice of cozily American subject...
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Sunday, April 30, 2017
100 Days of Media Hoping for a New, Improved Trump
Nearly 100 days into the Trump presidency, corporate media are still struggling to reckon with the man that occupies the White House. An administration so proudly reckless in its actions and so brazenly detached from the truth has routinely overwhelmed political reporters whose accountability...
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'Our political finance system,' writes Richardson, 'has become little more than an income redistribution model for the ultra-rich and a no-lose proposition for big media corporations.' (Photo with overlay: the autowitch/flickr/cc) Views
Tuesday, November 04, 2014
The Biggest Winners of the 2014 Midterms: Corporate Media
No matter who prevails this Election Day, one tiny constituency can already lay claim to a landslide win. Thanks to our nation’s increasingly unregulated campaign finance rules, large media corporations once again enjoyed a tidal wave of political ad spending this midterm election, and none more so...
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